Cognitive Dissonance of the 2016 Presidential Election


Many years ago when I designed training programs I would occasionally use a learning strategy called Cognitive Dissonance as a way to integrate new knowledge and skills into the mental schema of my learners.

Cognitive Dissonance is a theory first developed by social psychologist Leon Festinger. It proposes that we seek consistency in our beliefs and attitudes in any situation where two cognitions are inconsistent.

A classic example is:

“Most people want to hold the belief that they make good choices when purchasing products. However, when a product or item we purchase turns out badly, it conflicts with our previously existing belief about our decision-making abilities.” -Kendra Cherry, Very Well

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The Trump Dissonance Factor may feel overwhelming for some so soon after the election, but eventually we will be able to remove the emotion from this failure and when we do, we can begin the reconciliation of our political constructs.

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